APRIL FOOLS: How to Make RHS More Environmentally Friendly

Oona Shain, Reporter

Have you ever noticed the lack of recycling in our school? What about the amount of paper that we use every. single. day? Or perhaps you’ve seen the lunch trays that almost always get thrown out? 

If you’re sick of polluting the environment and sick of living in a school of filth, let me be the first to welcome you to our new and improved completely environmentally friendly school.

Let’s go for a tour. 

We’ll begin in the lunchroom. For years our school has been operating on the same boring and wasteful system. Students pick what they want to eat and it’s handed to them on cardboard trays. They eat the food and then… 

Here. Here’s where it goes downhill

Instead of recycling their trays they throw them out. Into the trash. Which then go into a landfill. Mixing with non-biodegradable, sometimes toxic materials. 

Is that what you want to do? Do you want to be responsible for our contribution to our nation’s landfills?

If not, our new alternative is simple, flawless and mechanized.

Similar to an assembly line, students will approach the cafeteria, lie down on the conveyor belt and robots will deposit individually portioned mush into their mouths. The food will be dropped in their mouth without having to waste utensils or food trays. 

An essential part of the school day reimagined. Clean. Environmentally friendly. And fun! Students will finally be able to relax as they eat their lunch 

Some students rely on straws in the cafeteria or just throughout their day. Straws help to make water and other beverages more fun to drink and are a staple in some of our daily lives. But we all know the drawbacks of straws. According to “For a Strawless Ocean” in America, we use over 500 million straws per day and the majority of them end up in our oceans. They pollute the water and kill marine life.

Yet still, students in our district use non reusable straws. Our alternative is simple, elegant, and cost-effective. Every school will be permitted one single straw. One single straw for CLS. One for the middle school and one for us, the high school. 

Look around. This is the diverse community that you’ll be sharing your straw with.

Lizzie Carr is an environmentalist and founder of #Plastic Patrol, a UK wide campaign to get rid of plastic pollution. She is looking to “Boycott single-use plastic.” We agree with Lizzie and will ensure that our straw system is a step in the right direction for riding our school of single-use plastic. 

Our straw will be hand made from the finest locally sourced wood we can find. What’s more important? The act of sharing saliva and risking the chance of getting sick? Or the environment? I think it’s a pretty clear decision to make. 

Although most people use straws, I bet everyone you know uses paper. 

Every single year almost two hundred and fifty thousand pieces of paper are used in schools. And our school is no different. We as a society put our focus on plastic consumption without thinking about how much paper we consume. Dylan de Thomas, Vice President of the Recycling Partnership says that “plastics, obviously are a lot simpler to set up a recycling operation” for. 

Not many people are thinking about paper, until now. Think of all the paper teachers and students print every day. May that be homework, tests review sheets, answer keys, or even photos. The amount of paper we consume is atrocious. 

But it wasn’t always this way. we must look to our ancestors for the answer. Before the wide web, before the internet, before the printing press and papermaking. Our ancestors used primitive yet environmentally sound ways of communicating, promoting the importance of culture and pictures. That’s why we must go back and begin to only communicate Hieroglyphs. 

You know them from Global History, and soon you all will grow to love them.

Stone tablets will be passed to students and our new curriculum will require everyone to chisel anything they need to remember into their tablet.

This will not only decrease our need for paper but also will be great exercise!! Put them in your backpack or carry them in our hands, regardless you’re getting a workout! 

Your body and your mind will be stronger!

When coming up with solutions for our school and our society it is sometimes necessary to look back to history. But sometimes we need to invent new ideas and implement new practices. 

Lastly, I liked to walk you through our punishment policy.

Which will appear in the student handbook and be recognized by all teachers and office personnel.

If any students are caught not recycling a clearly recyclable material or are complicit in the crime of not recycling they will suffer consequences.

On the first offense, students will be required to spend their community service hours harvesting and whittling locally sourced wood into straws. Not only will this practice hurt their hands but it will also hopefully train them to never throw out a recyclable item.

If the whittling isn’t bad enough, the last and most serious punishment is the worst. After the second offense, the student will be required to pay the ultimate price: Wearing a large oddly shaped trash hat. 

The trash hats will not only be disgusting and reek of trash, but they will also weigh so much that second-time offenders will often leave high school with hunchbacks. As Harvard health publishing says “the solution, of course, is a hat”. 

And Harvard is correct. These punitive trash hats are our future and will solve all of our environmental problems. 

The environment is in desperate need of our help. We as a school are not doing enough. My changes to the curriculum and to daily life will better the school community and enable students to want to help the environment. 

Imagine. Walking into the lunchroom and seeing hungry students on conveyor belts, 4 grades sharing one straw and rule-breakers exiled in the corner wearing their trash hats.

We only have one planet, and for the four years that you are here, we all will be part of the solution in being an eco-friendly and wacky community.